Mercedes Preparing to Spend Billions on Charging Infrastructure

German automotive giant Mercedes-Benz is set to spend billions of euros on fast-charging stations across Europe, North America and China by 2030, the company announced on Thursday. The automaker said it was planning to start construction this year in North America, where it is targeting to build 2,500 charging points at 400 locations across the United States and Canada by 2027. It will jointly invest over €1 billion required by 2030 for North America with renewable energy producer and battery storage operator MN8 Energy, and is also partnering with charging network company ChargePoint for technical know-how.

MN8 Chief Executive Yoder said the company expected to make a profit within five to seven years, possibly earlier if it received subsidies or if utilization rates get higher than expected.

Discussions are ongoing with potential partners for the network buildout in Europe and China.

The United States has around 140,000 public EV chargers according to July 2022 data.

One of the primary concerns of consumers around the world is the availability of charging infrastructure, which discourages them from purchasing electric vehicles (EVs).

In Europe, where Mercedes-Benz is already part of a charging joint venture, called Ionity, with Volkswagen, BMW, Ford and Hyundai. Thanks to that joint venture, infrastructure is further along, with around 375,000 charging points available at the end of 2021.

Still, the region requires at least 3.4 million charging points by 2030 to meet an expected rise in demand.

Separately, Mercedes-Benz has applied for certification in California and Nevada for Level 3 automated driving, enabling its EVs to take over driving at up to 60 kilometers per hour on suitable motorway sections or in dense traffic, the company also said.

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